Charles Limb received his MD from Yale University School of Medicine (1996), followed by surgical residency and fellowship in Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital (2003). Dr. Limb is currently the Francis A. Sooy Professor of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery and the Chief of the Division of Otology, Neurotology and Skull Base Surgery at UCSF. He is also the Director of the Douglas Grant Cochlear Implant Center at UCSF and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Neurosurgery.
Dr. Limb's current areas of research focus on the study of the neural basis of musical creativity as well as the study of music perception in deaf individuals with cochlear implants. His work has received international attention and has been featured by National Public Radio, TED, National Geographic, the New York Times, PBS, CNN, the Smithsonian Institute, the Library of Congress, the Sundance Film Festival, and the American Museum of Natural History.
The theme of the event will be "Music in the Mind". Dr. Limb will highlight recent research on musical perception, discuss the critical difficulties faced by cochlear implant users, and use jazz improvization as a model for understanding the neural mechanisms of expert level musical creativity.
Todd A. Kuiken received his MD and Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from Northwestern (1990) and his residency in PM&R at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (1995). Dr. Kuiken currently is the Director of the Center for Bionic Medicine (CBM). He is a Professor in the Depts. of PM&R, Biomedical Engineering and Surgery of Northwestern University.
Dr. Kuiken’s research team is working to develop a neural-machine interface to improve the function of artificial limbs. A main research focus of the lab is developing a technique to use nerve transfers for improvement of myoelectric prosthesis control. By transferring the residual arm nerves in an upper limb amputee to spare regions of muscle it is possible to make new signals for the control of robotic arms. These signals are being directly related to the original function of the limb and allow simultaneous control of multiple joints in a natural way. This work has now been extended with the use of pattern recognition algorithms, enabling the intuitive control of more functions of the prosthetic limbs. Similarly, hand sensation nerves grow into spare skin so that when this skin is touched, the amputee feels like their missing hand is being touched.
Watch a video of the event here.